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Nine NYA Students Win Scholastic Writing Awards

writing-featureCongratulations to nine North Yarmouth Academy (NYA) students who received 2016 Scholastic Writing Awards! Afton Morton (’20, South Freeport) won three Gold Key Awards for her short stories, Commensalism in Humanity, and Playthings of Fear. Under the World of Hurt earned Afton her third Gold Key in flash fiction. Her submissions will be judged in mid-March for national recognition.

Emma Cohen (’19, Falmouth), Tellie Stamaris (’21, Gorham), and Rachel Burns (’20, Brunswick) each received a Silver Key. Cohen won for her personal essay Locked Memories, Soft Melodies. Stamaris was awarded for her flash fiction, Darling, Never Grow Up. Burns won the Silver Key for her poem Frayed But Not Forgotten and an Honorable Mention for The Veil That Covers Our Eyes.

Also receiving Honorable Mentions were Ellie Griswold (’19, Cumberland) and Elizabeth Sevigny (’19, Portland) with two apiece. Madison Argitis (’20, Yarmouth), Sydney Billings (’20, Yarmouth), and Annie Sillin (’21, Yarmouth) were each awarded with one.

“Students devoted a great deal of time and commitment to their pieces. Many of these students took real risks with their writing, and it is gratifying to see their efforts acknowledged at the state level,” praises Middle School English teacher Holly Dana.

The Maine Region of the Scholastic Writing Awards received 354 submissions this year. Thirty-one Gold Keys, 59 Silver Keys, and 70 Honorable Mentions were given. Submissions are juried by luminaries in the literary arts, some of whom are past award recipients. Panelists look for works that best exemplify originality, technical skill, and the emergence of a personal voice or vision.

Award-winning students and their teachers, Holly Dana and Heidi Grant, will be recognized at a ceremony on March 11, 2016 at 6:00 p.m. in Talbot Lecture Hall on the University of Southern Maine’s Portland campus.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


NYA Teacher Awarded Golden Apple

limo-featureNorth Yarmouth Academy (NYA) is proud to announce Upper School French teacher and Middle School girls basketball coach Madame Fatou Diagana is the recipient of a Golden Apple Award! The monthly award is presented by Binnie Media Group, owners of 99.9 The Wolf, Frank FM, and ROCK 106.3 radio stations, to recognize individuals dedicated to the intellectual and emotional growth of Maine’s children and young adults. Madame Diagana was surprised and grateful for the recognition, “It was very nice to get nominated for such a prize as it is a great honor. I can’t take all the credit for this, though. I’m surrounded by great educators at NYA who care for their students and have inspired me to be the best I can be. I have no idea who nominated me, but, to the person who nominated me, thank you. It is humbling to be accepting this award, and it means the world to receive recognition for something I love doing.”

The best words to explain why she is so deserving would be those of Jenna Block ’16, the student who nominated her. “I nominated Madame for the award because she cares so much about her students, and it really shows. Zelda Clegg ‘17 and I take French 4 this year as an independent study, and she adapted her schedule to fit us in, and since none of us had done an independent study before, we all learn together. In the past, I have also never really enjoyed French since I have a hard time understanding new languages. Madame, however, makes it so fun and interactive that it’s easier to grasp and worth it to learn. Other than being an amazing teacher, Madame also stepped up to be the new Key Club advisor. She goes to all of our meetings, events, and has done a phenomenal job adapting to her new role. She’s not only an extraordinary teacher, but she’s an overall incredible person, and I thought it would be nice for her to be recognized since saying a simple ‘thank you’ just doesn’t seem to cut it. She has such a positive attitude and always carries a positive aura around her that is so contagious. Even though it’s her first year here in our community, she’s already made a huge impact, and we are so lucky to have her. The fact that she is being so modest about this, too, just proves the altruistic character she has. I’m so proud Madame got the Golden Apple award. She truly deserves it. “

As a Golden Apple recipient, Madame Diagana received a floral arrangement, dinner for two, and a limousine ride to and from school. However, Madame Diagana put her students first and arranged for the limousine to transport her Middle School girls basketball team, as a surprise, to their last away game in Freeport on February 3. She will also be recognized with the other recipients at a special banquet in August.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


NYA Hosts “The Practice of the Wild” as Part of Film Series

Practice-of-the-WildNorth Yarmouth Academy (NYA) is hosting a film series this winter entitled Wild Soul Words. The second film in the series, “The Practice of the Wild,” will be shown in the NYA Middle School Community Room (172 Main Street, Yarmouth) at 7:00 pm on Wednesday, February 10. This event is free and open to the public. “The Practice of the Wild,” directed by John J. Healey, documents the life, career, and ideas of Pulitzer Prize-winning environmental poet Gary Snyder. The film features conversations between Snyder and novelist Jim Harrison in a wilderness refuge on the Central California Coast. Snyder, who helped introduce Zen Buddhism to America, was part of the Beat generation and is known as the “poet laureate of Deep Ecology.”

The films in this series are all focused on the outdoors, spirituality, writing, and adventure. Future films will include a documentary about two Canadian biologists following a caribou herd in the Arctic, and a documentary about the recreation of an Alaskan voyage. Dates are to be determined.

Ian Ramsey, NYA Chair of Visual and Performing Arts, first organized this film series last winter. The idea came from a course Ramsey offered last spring about Alaska. In the course, students learned about the vast culture and community of Alaskan authors who write about their experiences in nature. The class culminated with a trip to Alaska where students sea-kayaked, wrote, met with the writers they studied, and adventured with Ramsey.

Ramsey began teaching at NYA more than 15 years ago and, in addition to the Alaska trip last June, has led many NYA student trips around the country and the world. He took the NYA jazz band to Chicago, the bluegrass band to China, and many groups of students on spring break trips to Vietnam and Thailand.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


NYA Students Receive Regional Scholastic Art Awards

scholastic-1Congratulations to North Yarmouth Academy (NYA) students Elizabeth Sevigny (’19, Portland) and Marley Boettcher (’20, Windham) who each received a Silver Key Award in the 2016 Maine Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. Sevigny was awarded for her still life “Apples,” and Boettcher was awarded for her self-portrait. Sevigny and Boettcher’s works are part of the Scholastic Art and Writing Award’s student show at Maine College of Art (MECA) from January 23 through February 13. This exhibit will be open during Portland’s First Friday Art Walk on February 5 from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Also honored were Ark Lu (’20, Cumberland Foreside), Sydney Billings (’20, Yarmouth), and Sam Yankee (’21, Freeport) who earned two Honorable Mentions each. The awards ceremony will take place at MECA in Portland on February 13. Certificates will be presented to all Honorable Mentions, Silver, and Gold Key winners.

scholastic-featureThe Scholastic Art and Writing Awards’ mission is to identify students with exceptional artistic and literary talent and present their remarkable work to the world through these awards. This year, there were approximately 1,200 individual pieces of artwork submitted in Maine, and only 11 percent earned recognition.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


NYA Receives Grant to Fund Innovation Lab

innovationNorth Yarmouth Academy (NYA) was awarded a $25,000 grant from the Davis Family Foundation for the creation of a new innovation lab. The lab will be designed to enhance existing class courses, provide resources for new courses, and cultivate exploration and discovery among students at NYA. Head of School Ben Jackson explained, “We are grateful for the generous support of the Davis Family Foundation. In addition to the core academic disciplines, NYA recognizes the importance of preparing our students for success in today’s changing world. This initiative will both enhance existing courses and electives and open up new opportunities for our students.”

NYA has always recognized the importance of fostering critical thinking, collaboration, creativity, and real-world problem solving skills. Resources in the innovation lab will support the development and advancement of these skills. Educational tools in the new lab will include a 3D printer, design software, new Dell Precision desktops, filmmaking and music recording equipment, robotics hardware, and more. The lab and all contents will be available to NYA students as early as first grade. Significant professional development for faculty is also included in this funding. A portion of the funds raised at NYA’s annual Soiree event will be allocated to further enhance the resources in the lab and the integration of technology across campus.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.

 


NYA Girls Ice Hockey Team Plays at TD Garden

gahden-featureOn January 3, while most North Yarmouth Academy (NYA) students were saying goodbye to winter break and preparing to return to campus for second semester, the girls varsity ice hockey team was taking the ice where legends play. Out front, there is a statue of #4 in flight and the name on the building says “TD Garden,” but New Englanders know it better as “The Gahden.”

Thanks to The Pingree School and a connection to the Boston Bruins organization, the girls got to skate under six Stanley Cup Championship banners and ten retired numbers of Bruins greats. Panther girls ice hockey coach, Amy McNally, attributes the invitation to sportsmanship, “Pingree’s coach, Sarah Carpenter, emailed me asking if we would appreciate the opportunity to play in a scrimmage at the Garden. I think that stems from a good experience each of our teams had playing each other only weeks before. We are pretty evenly matched squads, which made for a fun scrimmage on Sunday.”

North Yarmouth Academy senior, Keeley Bartolini, agrees, “Playing at the TD Garden is something I will never forget. Having the opportunity of a lifetime was something I’ll always keep as my favorite memory of senior year. I have never had that much excitement over a game until I played there. I’m very grateful for the Pingree girls hockey program for inviting me and my teammates.”

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


Steven Callahan, Sailor, Ocean Survivalist, Author & Film Consultant, to visit NYA

AdriftNorth Yarmouth Academy (NYA) will welcome Steven Callahan to campus on Friday January 8. Callahan, of Lamoine, Maine, will speak to students during NYA’s weekly Friday Forum at 10:15 a.m. in the gym about his 76 days lost at sea on a life raft. His presentation will be followed by a question and answer session. He will also visit several sophomore English classes. Callahan chronicled his life threatening experience of will and survival in Adrift: 76 Days Lost at Sea, read by many NYA Middle and Upper School students. His story of grit and perseverance will be a powerful message for all.

His experience adrift and his years of designing and living on sailing vessels prompted Callahan to redesign vessel safety features and life rafts to which he holds three U.S. patents. Film director Ang Lee hired Callahan as a consultant on living aboard a life raft for the 2012 film Life of Pi. Callahan built many of the tools and lures used by the title character in the film. Callahan, a naval architect by training, has built, designed, taught design, raced, lived on, and sailed boats since the late 1960’s. Beginning in 1977, he authored many articles for the yachting press. He became a contributing editor for Sail and Sailor magazine in the 1980’s and was an associate editor, senior editor, and editor at large for Cruising World from 1994 into the 2000’s. In addition to Adrift, he wrote Capsized, recounting the true story of four men trapped on an overturned boat for 119 days. “Steven’s visit surely will be a great opportunity for our students, several of whom have read his book as outside reading in addition to studying other tales of survival at sea (such as Alfred Lansing’s Endurance and Yann Martel’s Life of Pi) in their English classes. We are all very excited for this chance to learn more about his experiences and his writing,” said Ross Markonish, chair of NYA’s English department.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


Climo Named New Girls Lacrosse Coach for NYA

climoNorth Yarmouth Academy (NYA) is excited to announce Molly Climo as the new coach of the girls varsity lacrosse team. She comes to NYA from Husson College in Bangor where she was an assistant coach. Her season at Husson proved positive as the team had their best record in four years. Prior to her time up north, she helped middle and high school students elevate their game at the Maineiax Lacrosse Club in Portland.

Climo’s love for the sport began 16 years ago as a player in Sudbury, Massachusetts. She then attended Gould Academy where she was awarded Maine All-American accolades. Recognition for her outstanding play continued through her four years playing at the collegiate level for Hobart and William Smith Colleges, where some of her records still stand. NYA Athletic Director, Jack Hardy, believes she is a natural fit for the position, “Coach Climo is a great personality who has a solid background in multiple aspects in the sport of lacrosse. A highly successful and awarded high school and collegiate player, she also has some great coaching experience. She wants for our girls just what we want: to love and enjoy the sport, have fun, and yet understand the hard work and dedication it takes to succeed as an individual and team.”

Coach Climo is just as enthusiastic about taking the field this season as NYA is, “I am so honored to have been given this coaching opportunity at NYA. As a player who has had many mentors and role models throughout my career, it seems only fair to be able to repay that gift and the lessons I’ve learned to the girls lacrosse team at NYA. I’m looking forward to the start of the season and to working with these amazing young women.”

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


NYA Service Projects Ramp Up During the Holidays

RonaldMcDonaldDinner-featureThe third Thursday of November typically marks the unofficial start to the giving season. This is when North Yarmouth Academy hits its stride in the year-round mission to support the community and other charitable efforts. On the heels of October’s pumpkin carving event to support Camp Sunshine, the campus continues to work on ways to give back.

Two weeks before Thanksgiving, the NYA Make-A-Wish club held its annual choral concert fundraiser at the First Universalist Church of Yarmouth. It was a night for people to gather and enjoy performances by the NYA Varsity Singers and choruses from Mt. Ararat High School, Yarmouth High School, and Cheverus. NYA choral director Nora Krainis’s bluegrass band, Borderline, and Port City Sound also took the stage. Their music entertained and Barry Conant and his son, Jared, described how Make-A-Wish Maine helped them and others like them. Over $2,000 was raised that evening. “The Make-A-Wish Club is made up of some pretty remarkable students. They are focused, compassionate, and driven to help others,” said club advisor and Upper School English teacher Heidi Grant. The Make-A-Wish Club has succeeded every year for over a decade in granting a wish for a Maine child with a life-threatening illness.

Inspired by October’s pumpkin carving and the book Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney, the first and second grade class turned their study of sunflowers from Mrs. Gallagher’s garden into a fundraiser for Camp Sunshine they named “Seeds of Sunshine.” The students harvested the sunflower seeds and divided them into 100 packets to be sold at Middle and Upper School lunches for $1.00 each. The packets were adorned with a label chosen through a design contest of their own original artwork. First and second grade teacher, Shannon Gallagher, boasts, “I am always amazed at how the students truly shape the direction of our service efforts simply by being themselves. It is wonderful to see them so proud and happy for doing something kind for others.” They sold out in an hour and a half.

SantaHustleSince the beginning of the year, the Key Club has been doing their part to spark a bright spot in the lives of perfect strangers going through difficult times. On October 25, students cooked a meal for families staying at the Ronald McDonald House in Portland. “What was so great about this event was that the students stayed afterwards and enjoyed the meal with the families,” said Key Club advisor and Upper School French teacher Fatou Diagana. “It was wonderful to see them interact with the young kids and their parents and to see the impact of this action on the students as well as the families,” she said. One month later, a few Key Club members volunteered at the Santa Hustle 5K in South Portland. This race benefits the Easter Seals, whose mission is to ensure that people with special needs have everything they need to live, learn, and work in everyday life.

Charity is a cornerstone of the NYA culture. Alumni continue to serve the global community after graduation in a multitude of ways. Right now, the entire school is working with NYA alumna Molly McMahon ’95 to bring joy to the lives of local immigrant families this holiday season. The NYA community will provide gifts to family members as well as financial donations in the form of Hannaford gift cards. Some of the families would otherwise have next to nothing.

The NYA community is more than happy to offer assistance than to let someone go without. These are just a few of the charitable activities that students, faculty, staff and others participate in throughout the school year. From clubs to classes to school-wide initiatives, nothing is too big or too small for NYA to undertake.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.


NYA Holds Holiday Craft Fair & Book Sale

hometown-holidaysThe North Yarmouth Academy (NYA) Parents’ Association will host the Annual Holiday Craft Fair and Book Sale on Saturday, December 5, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. in North Yarmouth Academy’s gymnasium (154 Main Street) and Safford Center cafeteria (148 Main Street) in Yarmouth. This annual event is held in conjunction with a town-wide holiday celebration: Yarmouth Hometown Holidays. Over sixty vendors from across the state will present a diverse variety of crafts including artwork, photography, jewelry, candles, soap, alpaca products, blown glass, woodworking and much more. Enjoy a sit-down lunch at the NYA Café and listen to holiday music by the NYA chorus. Money raised from booth rental fees will help support NYA teacher grant requests.

There are no longer booth rentals available – the fair is currently full. Crafters who would like to be placed on next year’s mailing list may email the Vendor Coordinator, Kate Tufts, at kate.tufts@gmail.com.

North Yarmouth Academy is an independent, college preparatory, coeducational school for toddlers to students in grade twelve. Since 1814, NYA has fostered integrity, character and intellect in its students. For more information, please contact NYA at 207-847-5423 or visit our website at nya.org.

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